How to Set Goals that Change Your Life (and Achieve Them!)
Have you ever achieved a big, juicy goal that you were really excited about? If you have, it feels good to reach the top of that metaphorical mountain, right?! Hitting your goals supercharges your confidence and can inspire you to think even bigger.
But what if you’ve been spinning your wheels with your goals and stalling out on your dreams? If that’s you, cut yourself some slack—you’re in the right place and I’m here to help. Today I’m sharing specific strategies that helped me learn how to set goals that light my heart on fire (I call them Big Sky Goals!). We’ll talk about how to sort through your many wonderful ideas and choose the goal that’s right for you right now, and best of all, you’ll learn how to turn your goals into a stunning reality!
Limiting beliefs that get in the way of our goals
But first, let’s address some of the limiting beliefs that tend to get in the way of creating the life we want to live. You might have experienced one (or all!) of the following…
- 1. You’re not really sure how to set goals in the first place. You might think you’re doing it wrong or not choosing the right goals.
- 2. You’re afraid to fail. You don’t even get started because you feel like it isn’t worth it. Or, when you get tripped up along the way to your goal, you throw in the towel.
- 3. You have so many goals, you get overwhelmed and shut down. You have lists and lists of goals from over the years, but have trouble moving into the action phase.
If you’re dealing with any of these challenges, don’t worry! The advice I’m sharing today is going to transform the way you look at goal setting (and make it a whole lot easier to achieve them).
Why is it important to set goals?
Goals are our compass. They help us get clear and set a positive course for our lives. Goals remind us that the stuff we dream about CAN come true if we set our minds (and actions!) to it. They can even be a light in our lives when we face challenging times.
While it’s easy to get caught up in the fix-yourself mentality and self-improvement advice, that’s not what goals are really about—at least as far as I’m concerned! You’re perfectly complete the way you are today and having goals doesn’t take away from that. Instead, they should uplift and challenge you to live up to your own unique and amazing potential.
How to Set Goals and Achieve Them: My #1 Tip
If you’re a driven dreamer like me, then you probably have a lot of goals for your life. That’s a wonderful thing, but here’s the truth: Research shows that we’re not as good at multitasking as we might think. And trying to juggle too much at once can actually hurt our productivity by as much as 40 percent (source).
When it comes to goals, less is more.
That’s why when folks ask me how to set goals that really matter and come true, my most important advice is to choose just one. It’s what I call your Big Sky Goal—your wild, delicious, holy-wow dream.
Your Big Sky Goals significantly move the needle on your joy and the quality of your life. They closely align with your current passions, wants and needs. And when I say big, I do mean BIG… this type of goal will create a cascade of results that have a domino effect in your life.
Have your sights set on building or growing your own business?
Pursuing big dreams means setting and working toward BIG goals. And when it comes to starting or growing your own business, it’s all too easy to burn bright at the beginning until eventually… you burn out.
But you can have your dreams AND your health and happiness—it’s possible, I swear! Get my free ebook, How to Build Your Business without Burning Out: 10 Keys for Avoiding the Mistakes Most Entrepreneurs Make, for the support you need to get started (even if you’re starting from scratch!).
Identifying Your Big Sky Goal
I know what you might be thinking. “How am I supposed to choose just one? I have so many goals and they’re all equally important!”
Keep in mind that what you choose to focus on now isn’t set in stone forever. You can always come back to your other dreams—they’re not going anywhere! But the point is to choose one goal that has the power to really move the needle on your overall vision for your life. It’s a goal that currently has the greatest ROI (return on investment) for where you are right now.
Let me show you what I mean. Grab your favorite journal and try out this simple, four-step exercise to brainstorm and choose your Big Sky Goal. Give yourself time to noodle and really go there. The clarity you’ll get from these journaling exercises is priceless, so give it a try!
1. Dream big.
Take a moment and picture your future self—the excited, inspired, happy and content person you want to be. What goals has this future you achieved? Daydream in vivid detail and color. Let your imagination be your guide and don’t hold anything back.
This step is about getting all of your ideas out on paper (and I mean all of ‘em—we’ll narrow down later!). Make sure to think about how you want to feel in your heart and body as you noodle on your dreams.
2. Connect to your WHY.
When we’re out of alignment with our goals, it’s hard to get any traction. We may have the best intentions, boundless willpower and serious dedication, but if we don’t have an intimate connection to our goals, we’re setting ourselves up for frustration.
This exercise will help you uncover the compelling motivation behind each of the goals you brainstormed in step 1. Doing so will help you connect with them on a deeper level and determine which one really resonates with you in this season of life. Write about what each goal means to you and why it’s important. What will drive you to keep coming back to the goal, even when life gets in the way or you encounter an unexpected roadblock?
3. Choose your one goal.
Now, look back over your goals and pick one that excites you. Take your time and choose from your heart. Do your best to pick a goal that has the potential to make the most impact on your life right now. And if it could make achieving your other goals a little easier… even better!
Now, I wanna make one thing super clear: Your Big Sky Goal isn’t always going to be sexy or thrilling. It might not be what you expect, so keep an open mind. Before I found my way to my current Big Sky Goal, I was laser-focused on what I call a shiny object. I was also 100 percent convinced I was on the right path. But in truth, that goal wasn’t right for me and it certainly wasn’t getting me closer to the overall vision I have for my life (sorry goal, you gotta go).
So I reevaluated and realized that the shiny goal had distracted me from what I really needed to dedicate myself to. Now I’m working toward a goal that’s a little less titillating… and a LOT more aligned with the work I need to be doing right now (specifically in my business!).
Still not sure? When in doubt, ask your body. Read your notes from step 1 aloud and pay attention to the feeling in your gut and bones. If you ask your body (and really listen), the answer is usually crystal clear.
4. Take action.
Goals are great, but without intentional action, they stagnate. Bring your Big Sky Goal to life by brainstorming the steps (doesn’t matter if it’s a millimeter or a mile!) that will bring you closer to your desired outcome.
Ask yourself what you can do right now with the resources you already have. Write down a list of specific, clear actions and choose just one to do each day.
A Simple Practice to Help You Reach Your Goal
Now that we’ve talked about how to set goals that resonate with you and improve your quality of life, how do you get the job done?
Write down your goal every day.
That’s right, rewrite it every day. This may seem repetitive at first, but believe me, writing it daily is the most powerful way to ensure it doesn’t get neglected. Plus, what you imagine, feel and write about over and over again becomes what you create!
I can trace all of my major accomplishments and wins back to this practice—the release of my documentary, meeting the love of my life, becoming a New York Times bestselling author… all of it. Now I can’t wait to see what incredible magic YOU create with your Big Sky Goal!
Bring your Big Sky Goal within reach!
Ready to take the leap and reach your Big Sky Goals? I designed The Results Journal to help you supercharge your health, amplify your joy and rock your dreams. You can get all the deets here, but let’s start with some tantalizing tidbits to whet your appetite! Through daily exercises and guidance from me, The Results Journal will help you…
- Make wellness a priority and integrate it into your everyday life.
- Cultivate a mindset of positivity and possibility so you can feel better, attract more joy and abundance, and create the life you want.
- Capture, sort through and prioritize your goals and dreams, so you’re working on what matters most right now.
- And SO much more!
Order your Results Journal now!
Your turn: Will you try out the exercise I shared to identify your Big Sky Goal? Give me a big “Let’s do this!” in the comments below so we can support each other!
Peace & big sky goals,
Whether you’re starting from scratch or looking to grow your existing business, my new ebook is here to help! You’ll learn to anticipate and navigate the mistakes most entrepreneurs make so you can be successful without compromising the life you love. All 10 tips come from my experience owning and operating a profitable business for over 15 years. Get instant access to free guidance from me today!